FBI informant in on NYC terrorism plot?
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of Village Voice (A progressive New York City street newspaper)
Posted: July 12th, 2009
Last month, police and the FBI arrested four Newburgh men on charges that they had plotted to bomb synagogues in the Riverdale neighborhood of the Bronx and fire a missile at a military jet. As more details emerged, however, the less the four defendants sounded like men with the skills to plan a sophisticated terror plot. They were small-time crooks, felons with long criminal records. What the indictment didn't say, and what the initial news reports didn't fill in, was the extent to which the fifth man in the plot, an unnamed FBI informant, had provided the glue to hold the Newburgh 4 together. That informant was a Pakistani man named Shahed Hussain, code-named "Malik," who agreed to work for the FBI to obtain leniency after he was arrested in 2002 for fraud. Over a period of about a year, Malik met with [the] defendants ... while under FBI surveillance. The Newburgh bomb plot isn't the first of Malik's operations for the government. He played a similar role four years ago in an Albany case, in which he helped the FBI arrest a man named Mohammed Hossain, a cash-poor pizzeria owner, and his imam, Yassin Aref, after persuading them to launder $50,000 in a made-up plot to bring a missile to the U.S. and assassinate the Pakistani prime minister. In both cases, Malik did not stumble upon active terror cells plotting to bring destruction on American soil. Instead, in both Newburgh and Albany, he needed long periods of time to recruit his Muslim contacts, spin elaborate tales about his terror contacts, and develop solid plans of action, all the while providing the defendants with large amounts of resources and cash incentives. In each case, the question remains: Would either set of defendants have done anything remotely like plant bombs or launder money for terrorists if not for the prodding and plotting and encouragement of Malik and the FBI?
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